In 1927 a committee was formed to investigate the cinema industry in India and to make recommendations. The report contained a statistical section from which these tables are derived.
*prior: number of cinemas reported in 1927 by provincial governments prior to the enquiry
Explanation.—Three versions of the 1927 figures are given above. Of these the figures taken from the Distribution List (printed in Volume IV of the Evidence) are probably the most nearly correct. Apart from permanent cinemas which are open all the year round there are also 'seasonal' cinemas (generally in hill stations) which are open for part of the year only, and a number of halls where oinemn exhibitions are occasionally given. It is possible that some of the last class may have been included in the earlier figures, There are also about 12 privately owned regimental cinemas which are not included in the above figures. The Distribution List is a list of the cinemas in India, showing the seating accommodation and other particulars, compiled from information collected by the Provincial Governments at the request of the Committee.
Explanation.—The above [annual] figures were furnished bv the Provincial Governments and relate to the exhibition-licence which (in accordance with section 3 of the Cinematograph Act) must be obtained at each place where an exhibition is given by a travelling cinema. The figure of tbe licences issued in Burma prior to 1927 is not available. No information regarding the number of licences issued in the North- West Frontier Province and Delhi was obtainable. It was reported, however, that there were no travelling cinemas in those two Provinces.
Explanation.—Out of 271 cinemas regarding which particulars were available, 64 have been reported as exhibiting imported films exclusively- There is no doubt that the correct figure is larger. Of the total of 309 cinemas 66 are in cantonments. There are several cinemas in each of the big cities which are devoted exclusively to imported films, Taking also into account hill stations and cinemas in certain European institutes and clubs the number which show imported films exclusively can scarcely be less than 100
Source: Report of the Indian Cinematograph Committee 1927-28 
Page updated 15 January 2010